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BSF win Beighton Cup

April 02, 2003 19:08 IST

Border Security Force, Jallandhar, regained the glittering Beighton Cup after outplaying fancied Indian Oil 3-0 in the final of the 108th edition of the premier hockey tournament in Kolkata on Wednesday.

Christopher Ekka, Sushil Kujur and skipper Harbhajan Singh scored in the 24th, 60th and 64th minutes to give the trojans a resounding victory.

BSF won the cup after a gap of four years and for the fifth time. They last won the world's oldest hockey title in 1998. Earlier, they had won it in 1971, 1972 and 1996.

The win also fetched them the winner's purse of Rs 125,000. Indian Oil had to be content with Rs.75,000.

An ecstatic BSF captain Harbhajan Singh, after winning his first major hockey title this season, said: "We were confident from the beginning as the tournament was played on grass, on which we are quite acustomed. I'm really happy that we have been able to live up to expectations."

Indian Oil captain Jaswinder Singh, was, however, critical about the condition of the ground and said: "The ground is uneven and bumpy, which disturbed our movement. Moreover, most of our players are used to playing on the artificial turf."

Belying expectations, Indian Oil, with as many as four internationals in their fold, failed to combine well, though World Cuppers Prabhjot Singh and Deepak Thakur moved in tandem to force a few moves initially which, however, proved abortive.

It was Indian Oil who first came near scoring, in the 11th minute. But a Lakhwinder attempt, off a Deepak Thakur pass, hit the post after keeper K.M.Subbiah was beaten.

BSF, who began the day on a slow note, gradually made their presence felt and went ahead in the 24th minute against the run of play, when they were awarded a penalty-corner.

Collecting the ball from Davinder Kumar, following an indirect penalty-corner variation, defender Christopher Ekka sounded the board with a powerful hit (1-0).

The second-half saw BSF start with a renewed vigour. They could have increased the lead twice within nine minutes after the changeover, but first Harbhajan Singh was late to take a hit and then Sushil Kujur missed the target narrowly.

Both, however, made amends for their lapses. In the 60th minute Harbhajan neatly collected a pass from the right flank and sent the ball into the Indian Oil circle. Kujur smartly deflected the ball home (2-0).

Four minutes later, Harbhajan, collecting a nice pass from Davinder Kumar, found the target with a fine reverse scoop (3-0).

Indian Oil, however, had something to cheer about as Prabhjot Singh was adjudged the man of the final.


Source: source